- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 22, 2016

A Latina business owner is facing death threats after she held a “Latinas support D. Trump” onstage Saturday at a Donald Trump rally in Tucson, Arizona.

Betty Rivas and her husband Jorge own Sammy’s Mexican Grill in Catalina. Mrs. Rivas, who is from Mexico, and her husband, who is from El Salvador, have spent the last two decades building their business and achieving the American dream. Now, they’re fielding threatening phone calls, calls for a boycott and backlash from the Latino community, a local ABC News affiliate reported.

Mrs. Rivas said she only wanted to hear what Mr. Trump had to say. She said she also attended a rally for Democratic presidential candidate Bernard Sanders. She said she made the “Latinas support D. Trump” sign in hopes to get the GOP front-runner to notice her.

“Surprise to me, he said, ‘I love you darling,’” Mrs. Rivas said. “Donald Trump is a little funny, and he said ‘C’mon, c’mon,’ and I go up and say ‘Hi’ and that’s it.”

In a video of the encounter, Mr. Trump says, “I love you, darling! Come on over here. Get her up here. I love her. I’ve fallen in love. Melania, I think I’ve fallen in love with her!”

Mrs. Rivas said her brief appearance with the mogul is now threatening the future of her business.

“The bad messages came today. In the morning it started when I come here to the restaurant,” she said. “The phone is ringing, stupid things only.”

ABC News reported that the phone rang several dozen times during an interview with Mrs. Rivas, with many people calling the family racists and threatening their business.

“I want to tell the Latino community that I’m not a racist. I love Mexico. I’m a Mexican,” Mrs. Rivas told a local NBC News affiliate. “I never thought Donald Trump would have called me up to say hello.”

When asked if she regretted making the sign and going onstage, she said “not at all.”

“I haven’t done anything wrong; I have the right to say what I’m thinking — I can go listen to Hillary, I can go listen to Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, because I’m within my right. I didn’t do anything wrong,” she told ABC News.

The Pima County Sheriff’s Department visited the restaurant and now has an open investigation, ABC News reported.

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